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Ghent Light Festival reinvents itself to become corona-proof

Next January, discover Ghent’s most beautiful buildings and squares illuminated

  • September 15, 2020 17:30
  • Author Aseniya Dimitrova
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Source: Ghent Light Festival 2018 / VisitGent on Flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0)

The fifth edition of the Ghent Light Festival will go ahead, despite the health situation caused by COVID-19, the Flemish municipality announced. However, to meet the strict hygiene standards and avoid any risks for the safety of visitors and organisers, the popular culture festival will reinvent itself by splitting up into two smaller events and spreading over less crowded places all over the city.

A safe visit for all is promised by Ghent Light Festival 2021

The free Ghent Light Festival takes place every three years and lights up the city with works by international light artists, who reveal the hidden beauties of historical buildings and public spaces. The last edition of the event in 2018 gathered as many as 835 000 visitors.

This time, with regards to the existing threat of COVID-19, it will be irresponsible to welcome so many people in a short time, hence the organisers decided to spread the festival in time and space and organise it in a different way instead of cancelling it altogether, as it has happened with many other events in the last months.

Now, the Light Festival will last longer - the first part from Wednesday, 27 January to Sunday, 31 January 2021 and the second part from Wednesday, 3 February to Sunday, 7 February 2021. All light artworks will be shown at various locations throughout the city, including inner gardens and courtyards, and visitors will book a time slot in advance for each location, instead of simply following a walking route.

From an organizational point of view, this approach is believed to offer advantages in terms of audience monitoring and implementing foot traffic control. What is more, this way the visitor also gets to know less familiar places in the city.

The new method also makes it possible, in addition to large and spectacular installations, to have a greater eye for smaller and more intimate light artworks. As in previous years, the festival also wants to put local and up-and-coming talents in the spotlight.



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